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*Quick notes, moving fast on them...forgive any typos*
-- Getting ready for Super Bowl Weekend... The Computer still sees the Pats as 4.0-4.3 favorites and Vegas sees them as a 4.5 favorite. I don't see any reason to bet this game with serious money...at least, my serious money. However, I will be rooting for a Eagles win for a Nick Foles celebration. We'll look at this game a little deeper Sunday morning.
Tomorrow, look for a 'throwback' article of enjoyable reading midday. I just read it and wow...how time flies. One of my favorites pieces of literature in 2017...if not my favorite. The one I'll submit to the Pulitzer, perhaps.
Trying to take some Saturdays off during the offseason when we don't have Senior Bowls, Combines, and NFL Drafts. So, Saturdays will likely see some 're-purposed' FFM material from time to time and no daily notes.
-- We're hearing that Patriots long-time OL coach Dante Scarneccia is preparing to retire. So, you really believe Bill is coming back with all his key assistants all leaving at the same time?
-- Ozzie Newsome announced his quasi-retirement a year ahead. Once considered one of the better GMs in the NFL (not much competition) but either the scouting game passed him by or his luck ran out the past several years. Baltimore needed to overhaul everything but they did about a 30-40% cleaning. I think they'll flush the toilet all the way in 2019...Harbaugh and Flacco are headed down the drain.
-- You may have seen the note about LeSean McCoy inquired in trade back to Philly before a different deal was made. I think Sean McDermott (our 2017 GM/Exec of the Year) would have done a deal involving McCoy, so I don't believe it happened or that the Eagles tried real hard. I wouldn't be surprised to see McCoy traded this offseason. If I were the Bills GM, I would trade him hot while I could. He's already rumbling about a new contract with two years to go. There are a million RBs out there. Look at the two backfields in the Super Bowl...a collection of inexpensive pieces.
-- Teddy Bridgewater's free agent status might be 'up in the air'. Something to do with all the time he spent on the PUP list and might return to Minnesota in 2018 on the terms of his 2017 contract (one year, $1M+). The player and the union are set to fight it if it comes down to it.
-- Yesterday, I theorized on all the available QBs and possible landing spots. I wasn't considering Josh McCown as a full free agent but he is. Which just adds to the confusion of where all the available talent is going to land and who is going to be an odd man out. Someone between Bradford-Bridgewater-McCown-Bortles is not going to be a starting QB in 2018...or maybe Tyrod Taylor. That doesn't consider if Nick Foles wins MVP of the Super Bowl and gets heat to be another team's starting QB going forward.
-- How awkward will it be if Philly blows out the Patriots and Foles dominates, winning the MVP? Foles is instantly the backup to Carson Wentz the moment he holds up his MVP trophy and some team would have to make a big push to the Eagles to trade for him the next few months...which no NFL team wants to do. If the Eagles fall short next season...Wentz has the ghost of Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles hanging over him year-after-year.
I think the only team with any guts to make a big move for Foles would be Sean McDermott/Buffalo.
-- Here's why it's important for Le'Veon Bell to get to free agency...
Where would he go if not Pittsburgh? Let's say you're Bell and at this stage all you want is a giant contract with the most guaranteed money an RB has ever seen? Right now the Browns have $100M in CAP space and are utterly desperate to show they have a real NFL team.
Devonta Freeman signed a $41M/5 year deal with $22M guaranteed a few months ago. So, what's Bell worth? What's he worth to the Browns who have to overpay to attract any player? What if the Browns went $65M/5 years and $50M of it guaranteed...and front-loaded it so they are basically buying a star for a year or two? The Steelers are in a negative CAP position right now so they wouldn't be inclined to pay that kind of silly money.
It's 'millions', so none of us feels bad...but this is where the 'franchise tag' kills star players. Bell gets tagged by the Steelers and he makes $14.5M for one-year in 2018...leaving a lot of money on the table and if he blows out his knee it could hurt his earning power forever. Getting to free agency is worth an extra $15-30M guaranteed for Bell.
Getting tagged again could be contentious between he and the team. All Bell can do is threaten to sit out, so expect to hear that...again. It's all he's got.